Being a kid in a wedding is hard. You've got to stand still and behave and possibly wear something you don't like very much. And all you want to do is eat the Goldfish crackers waiting for you at the kids' table and play a little tag. It's just hard.
Make the kiddos in your wedding happy and excited to participate with these fun tips. But seriously, don't forget the Goldfish.
For the flower girls:
Make them feel special. Getting an excitable five year old to wear a poufy dress is much easier when they learn you will be wearing a poufy white dress, too. Especially for the ones infatuated with princesses, the more magical you make the experience, the more indulgent of the whole experience they will be.
Comfort is key, especially for a long, hot day. Put them in sweet little dresses that breathe and allow them to move freely post-wedding. Cotton sundresses that can twirl? They'll be in heaven.
There is no reason you can't cater to little girl chic. This flower girl above is getting her groove on and enchanting pretty much everyone. Why? Because she is rocking an awesome ensemble. Unless matchy-matchy is important to you, have a little fun with your favorite little friend.
Know her tolerances. Some little girls love headbands and hats from day one, others rip them off their heads as soon as they start developing fine motor skills. Before you ask her to wear a floral crown or headband, talk to her parents. They'll be able to tell you just how long you can expect it to stay on her head.
Give her age appropriate responsibilities. For an older flower girl, whether she gets to be the one to carry a banner or pull her little sister down the aisle (above), she will love being acknowledged as the mature young lady she knows she is. For the younger ones, make sure that your Pinterest-inspired flower girl fantasies are doable. A tiny two year old will not be able to carry a giant basket down the aisle. Give them containers or banners that they can easily manage.
For the ring bearers:
Unfortunately, junior groomsmen are not as common as junior bridesmaids, so young boys often get caught in the middle. For the older boys, let them wear suits similar to the groomsmen so that they will feel like one of the guys. Give them duties like handing out programs, or escorting grandmothers to their seats.
For the younger boys, it's harder to find matching suits (not to mention that they have no patience for such things). The best bet? A simple white button-up and dark pants. Pair them with a jaunty bow tie and even suspenders.
Just like with flower girls, you want to remember the limitations of these little pals. Make sure the pillow or banner is easy to carry. Between being in front of a large crowd and carrying the rings and holding the flower girl's hand (yuck), there's a lot going on for him.
Expect that with all kids in your wedding, the unexpected might happen. The flower girl might decide halfway down the aisle that she has to go to the bathroom...now. The ring bearer might decide that your beach wedding is a little dull and plop down to make sandcastles. These things happen. And luckily, they make for some pretty great pictures.